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Mobile game publisher Scopely has named entertainment leader Salaam Coleman Smith to its board of directors.
Scopely’s co-CEOs Walter Driver and Javier Ferreira announced the appointment of Coleman Smith, who has considerable experience across multiple Fortune 500 companies and is a former Disney executive.
“Salaam’s expertise, commitment to innovation, and ability to navigate a continuously evolving digital landscape will be extremely valuable to Scopely as we continue to expand our business,” the co-CEOs said. “She shares our vision to inspire play, every day, and we will significantly benefit from her bold consumer insights and ability to balance creative vision with strong business acumen.”
Coleman Smith has 20 years of media industry experience. She helped build some of the most powerful brands in entertainment through her audience-first thinking, enterprising spirit, and intuitive vision, the co-CEOs said.
She has served on the boards of Pinterest, Gap, and Enjoy Technology. Driver and Ferreira did not comment on the speculation of the moment. That is, Scopely is expected to file to go public at some point in the future, based on the rumors. Scopely has also been doing acquiring of its own, buying GSN Games from Sony for $1 billion.
On top of that, corporate boards of big companies are under more pressure to add more women and people of color. All of these reasons potentially add up to a need to expand the scope and capabilities of Scopely’s board.
I asked if the appointment was related to an IPO, and Driver responded in an email, “We continue to see massive momentum both with our business, and of course, across the broader games industry. Our priority now is building the best business we can by building long term game experiences, investing in the future of play, and further expanding our ‘operating system.’ Salaam is a critical part of our scaling journey.”
During her time at Disney, Coleman Smith served as an executive vice president at the Disney ABC Television Group, overseeing strategy and programming for ABC Family and Freeform.
Prior to joining Disney, she spent more than a decade at Comcast NBCUniversal where she served as president of Style Media. Coleman Smith also served as a senior executive at Viacom’s MTV Networks International Group and directed programming strategy for Nickelodeon’s global expansion in Europe, Asia, and Latin America.
When asked why she chose to join Scopely’s board, Coleman Smith said in a statement, “Scopely has an incredibly talented and ambitious team, a world-class technology platform with Playgami and a highly creative culture – all critical ingredients for success. Yet, their ability to build and nurture loyal, highly engaged player communities stands out as a defining characteristic of a company destined for greatness.”
She added, “The team’s dedication to empowering players to find a sense of meaning, authorship, and belonging within their game experiences is extremely important to the future of play, and a core reason why the company has become one the fastest-growing private mobile games companies today. I have always approached my work with the customer or audience in mind and I am excited to help further build on the incredible connections Scopely has with its players around the world. Games are also a family affair for me and I’m delighted to bring my personal and professional passions to my work with Walter, Javier, Tim and the entire Scopely board.”
Coleman Smith’s background complements Scopely’s alliances with the entertainment industry — from Sony and ViacomCBS to Disney and WWE. Scopely’s games feature both original IP and some successful brands such as Marvel, Star Trek, and others.
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